Discover more from The 5th Down Fantasy Playbook
Week 9's fantasy football rankings
Plus, the latest injury news and streaming options at QB and D/ST to consider this weekend.
Week 9 news you might be able to use…
Josh Dobbs was traded to the Minnesota Vikings in exchange for a sixth-round and seventh-round pick. He’ll start in place of Kirk Cousins, who was lost for the season. The move gives him a slight bump for the rest of the season as he moves behind a better offensive line, which can perhaps boost his rushing numbers.
Deshaun Watson practiced “on a limited basis” today, his first practice since the week before Week 7. While he’s back on the field, his status is uncertain for Week 9. If he can’t play, P.J. Walker remains the team’s backup and will slide in as the starter.
Darren Waller, who suffered a hamstring injury during the Giants OT loss to the Jets, was quoted today saying “it might take a little bit” for him to return to play, making his availability for the next few games doubtful. It does not seem that Waller will land on IR, but hamstring injuries can linger, and given the Giants’ poor success this season, it is possible they are extra cautious with the veteran TE.
The Falcons have named Taylor Heinicke as their Week 9 starting QB. He was solid in the second half last week, completing 57.1% of his passes for 175 yards and one touchdown against the Titans. Meanwhile, the Raiders, after firing their head coach, appear ready to see what they have in the rookie Aidan O’Connell and will have Jimmy Garoppolo serve as the backup moving forward.
Steamweaving Week 9
Survive the bye weeks with these streaming options, courtesy of 5th Down’s Martin Grisko…
Derek Carr (NO): Carr has had 4 very solid games in a row and has gotten better in each one of those matchups. He gets Chicago this week that ranks in the bottom 5 of most defensive categories against the pass. Carr has also been taking more deep shots lately, increasing his average depth of target to almost his career average. While the Bears added Montez Sweat at the trade deadline, I don’t think that’s enough to stop Carr from carving up this bad defense. Carr also gets a weak Minnesota defense next week, so this can be a two-week add if needed.
Sam Howell (WAS): Howell continues to be an absolute enigma at the QB position, finishing as the top QB last week after not being able to muster 10 points the week before. It would be easy to blindly grab Howell as the top waiver QB after last week’s blowup performance but even in a year while he’s struggling as a coach, it’s tough to start a young QB against a Bill Belichick defense. If you can’t get Carr, then I think Howell is a solid boom or bust bye week replacement.
Will Levis (TEN): Wow, that is my main takeaway from Will Levis’s debut as a starter. The man has the arm to make all the throws, and the question is will he continue to have the starting job once Tannehill returns? I think the risk is worth the reward, especially with all the QB injuries that happened this last weekend. If you have a questionable QB situation or want a high-upside backup going into the playoff stretch, grab Levis and hope the Titans let the young kid play. Defense/Special Teams
Falcons D/ST: This is a rough week for streaming DST but with news of Kirk Cousins injury, the Falcons move to the front of the line if you’re in need this week. The Vikings, at the moment, will be sending out a rookie to start at QB unless they trade for one before the trade deadline. While the Falcons don’t have the best defense, it is good enough to take advantage of a rookie making their first start. The Falcons also get the Cardinals in week 10, so this can be a two-week play.
Colts D/ST: Our stash from last week looks like an even better spot start now that the Panthers will be riding high off their first win of the season; it is looking like a perfect letdown spot. The Panthers’ offense once again did not look impressive last week, as it was their defense that carried them to the win. Take the Colts here to take advantage of a matchup against a rookie QB still finding his footing in the NFL.
Who else should you add to your roster this week? Check out Week 9 waiver wire picks from 5th Down’s Martin Grisko.
Week 9 player rankings
Our Week 9 fantasy football rankings for PPR, Half-PPR, and Standard scoring formats will update frequently up until kickoff on Sunday.